Dundalk FC left to rue missed chances and errors as Rapid end their Europa League hopes
Dundalk’s hopes of progression from Group B of the Europa League were ended following a 3-1 defeat to Rapid Vienna at the Aviva Stadium last night.
Once again Filippo Giovagnoli’s side were punished for individuals errors as the Austrians ran out worthy winners.
Rapid hit the front after just 11 minutes when Christoph Knasmüllner fired to the top left hand corner from distance after Sean Hoare had given possession away sloppily.
Hoare was again at fault for the visitors second on 37 minutes when he lost Ercan Kara from a Thorsten Schick cross with the Rapid player heading past Gary Rogers.
Dundalk were almost thrown a lifeline three minutes into the second half when Daniel Kelly won a penalty but fellow substitute Nathan Oduwa pulled the spot kick wide.
Kara then put the game beyond doubt on 58 minutes when he curled a superb effort past Gary Rogers to make it 3-0.
Dundalk would pull a goal back on 67 minutes when Chris Shields converted a penalty after a foul on Oduwa.
However despite good chances after that for Kelly and Oduwa the home side lacked the quality in front of goal to set up a nervous finish.
While there are two European matches still to play away to Molde and at home to Arsenal, Dundalk can no longer progress to the group stages of the competition.
The Lilywhites now turn their attention to Sunday’s FAI Cup semi-final away to Athlone Town.
Dundalk: Rogers; Hoare (Kelly HT), Boyle, Cleary; Gannon, Shields, Sloggett (Murray 72), Dummigan (Leahy 81); Colovic (McEleney HT), McMillan (Oduwa HT), Duffy.
Rapid Wien: Gartler; Stojković, Hofmann, Barać, Ullmann; Knasmüllner (Demir 81), Grahovac; Schick, Fountas (Schuster 66), Ibrahimoglu (Arase 55); Kara (Kitagawa 66).
Referee: Tamás Bognár (Hungary).